Posted on 8 Oct 2008 at 15:09, by Josh Blodwell
More and more PC users are believing that a change is as good as a rest, and taking customisation to staggering lengths. Josh Blodwell explores the modding craze.
When you imagine a PC, do you think of a beige or grey box, adorned with little else but a power button, floppy drive and CD-ROM drive? Perhaps your embarrassingly drab computer is tucked out of sight, underneath a desk? Fast, functional and inexpensive they may be, but the average PC won't win any prizes in a beauty competition - unless it's had a facelift, that is.
More and more people are refusing to put up with the standard cases that come with their home computers. Some make such dramatic changes to their PC cases that they create something close to art. Others are satisfied with glamming up an otherwise ugly lump in the corner of their bedrooms, home offices and workshops.
The act of customising a PC is known by enthusiasts as 'modding', and those who take drills, aerosol paints and advanced electronics to their computers are known as 'modders'. In this feature, we investigate the growing interest in modding, and look at why modders are often happy to spend hundreds of pounds on making their PCs look better, rather than upgrading them to run faster.
If looks could thrill
We'll also find out what it takes to start this fascinating hobby, providing tips on how to create an interesting, attractive PC without investing too much money and time. A new coat of paint can transform the appearance of an old PC, while a jigsaw can cut new apertures in a case for fans or add a hole for a viewing window, which can be glazed with a sheet of cheap acrylic.
Maybe you want a miniature computer, in which case there are plenty of options. Mini-ITX motherboards are a fraction of the size of a full-sized model, and come with everything you need already installed on the board. These boards are small and require little cooling, so they can be fitted in compact cases. Modders have even been known to mount them in cake tins or toasters. You won't get the fastest PC available, but you'll be able to install it pretty much anywhere.
If you are careful and have some practical knowledge of computers, the possibilities for modification are endless. You can make your computer as compact or as stylish as you like.
For more details about purchasing this feature and/or images for editorial usage, please contact Jasmine Samra on firstname.lastname@example.org
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